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OF  ALEPPO   .  . 

Seen  by  a 

A  Word  to  Germany's  Accredited 
Representatives  by  Dr.  Martin 
Niepage,  Higher  Grade  Teacher 
in  the  German  Technical  School  at 
Aleppo,  at  present  at  Wernigerode 

T.     FISHER     UNWIN     LTD. 



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Seen  by  a  German  Eyewitness. 

(A  word  to  Germany's  Accredited  Representatives 

by  Dr.  Martin  Niepage,  Higher  Grade  Teacher 

in  the  German  Technical  School  at  Aleppo, 

at  present  at  Wernigerode.) 

When  I  returned  to  Aleppo  in  September, 
1915,  from  a  three  months'  hohday  at  Beirout, 
I  heard  with  horror  that  a  new  phase  of  Armenian 
massacres  had  begun  which  were  far  more 
terrible  than  the  earlier  massacres  under  Abd-ul- 
Hamid,  and  which  aimed  at  exterminating, 
root  and  branch,  the  intelligent,  industrious,  and 
progressive  Armenian  nation,  and  at  transferring 
its  property  to  Turkish  hands. 

Such  monstrous  news  left  me  at  first  in- 
credulous. I  was  told  that,  in  various  quarters 
of  Aleppo,  there  were  lying  masses  of  half- 
starved  people,  the  survivors  of  so-called  "  de- 
portation convoys."  In  order,  I  was  told,  to 
cover  the  extermination  of  the  Armenian  nation 
with  a  political  cloak,  mihtary  reasons  were  being 
put  forward,  which  were  said  to  make  it  neces- 
sary to  drive  the  Armenians  out  of  their  native 
seats,  which  had  been  theirs  for  2,500  years,  and 

to  deport  them  to  the  Arabian  deserts.  I  was 
also  told  that  individual  Armenians  had  lent 
themselves  to  acts  of  espionage. 

After  I  had  informed  myself  about  the  facts 
and  had  made  enquiries  on  all  sides,  I  came  to 
the  conclusion  that  all  these  accusations  against 
the  Armenians  were,  in  fact,  based  on  trifling 
provocations,  which  were  taken  as  an  excuse 
for  slaughtering  10,000  innocents  for  one  guilty- 
person,  for  the  most  savage  outrages  against 
women  and  children,  and  for  a  campaign  of 
starvation  against  the  exiles  which  was  intended 
to  exterminate  the  whole  nation. 

To  test  the  conclusion  derived  from  my  infor- 
mation, I  visited  all  the  places  in  the  city  where 
there  were  Armenians  left  behind  by  the  con- 
voys. In  dilapidated  caravansaries  (hans)  I 
found  quantities  of  dead,  many  corpses  being  half- 
decomposed,  and  others,  still  living,  among  them, 
who  were  soon  to  breathe  their  last.  In  other 
yards  I  found  quantities  of  sick  and  starving 
people  whom  no  one  was  looking  after.  In  the 
neighbourhood  of  the  German  Technical  School, 
at  which  I  am  employed  as  a  higher  grade  teacher, 
there  were  four  such  hans,  with  seven  or  eight 
hundred  exiles  d5dng  of  starvation.  We  teachers 
and  our  pupils  had  to  pass  by  them  every  day. 
Every  time  we  went  out  we  saw  through  the 
open  windows  their  pitiful  forms,  emaciated  and 
wrapped  in  rags.  In  the  mornings  our  school 
children,  on  their  way  through  the  narrow 
streets,  had  to  push  past  the  two-wheeled  ox- 

carts,  on  which  every  day  from  eight  to  ten 
rigid  corpses,  without  coffin  or  shroud,  were 
carried  away,  their  arms  and  legs  traiHng  out 
of  the  vehicle. 

After  I  had  shared  this  spectacle  for  several 
days  I  thought  it  my  duty  to  compose  the 
following  report  : — 

"  As  teachers  in  the  German  Technical 
School  at  Aleppo,  we  permit  ourselves 
with  all  respect  to  make  the  following 
report : — 

"  We  feel  it  our  duty  to  draw  attention 
to  the  fact  that  our  educational  work  will 
forfeit  its  moral  basis  and  the  esteem  of  the 
natives,  if  the  German  Government  is  not 
in  a  position  to  put  a  stop  to  the  brutality 
with  which  the  wives  and  children  of 
slaughtered  Armenians  are  being  treated 

"  Out  of  convoys  which,  when  they 
left  their  homes  on  the  Armenian  plateau, 
numbered  from  two  to  three  thousand 
men,  women  and  children,  onl}^  two  or 
three  hundred  survivors  arrive  here  in  the 
south.  The  men  are  slaughtered  on  the 
way;  the  women  and  girls,  with  the  ex- 
ception of  the  old,  the  ugly  and  those  who 
are  still  children,  have  been  abused  by 
Turkish  soldiers  and  officers  and  then 
carried  away  to  Turkish  and  Kurdish 
villages,  where  they  have  to  accept  Islam. 
They  try  to  destroy  the  remnant  of  the 


convoys  by  hunger  and  thirst.  Even  when 
they  are  fording  rivers,  they  do  not  allow 
those  dying  of  thirst  to  drink.  All  the 
nourishment  they  receive  is  a  daily  ration 
of  a  little  meal  sprinkled  over  their  hands, 
which  they  lick  off  greedily,  and  its  only 
effect  is  to  protract  their  starvation. 

"  Opposite  the  German  Technical  School 
at  Aleppo,  in  which  we  are  engaged  in 
teaching,  a  mass  of  about  four  hundred 
emaciated  forms,  the  remnant  of  such 
convoys,  is  lying  in  one  of  the  hans. 
There  are  about  a  hundred  children  (boys 
and  girls)  among  them,  from  five  to  seven 
years  old.  Most  of  them  are  suffering 
from  typhoid  and  dysentery.  When  one 
enters  the  yard,  one  has  the  impression  of 
entering  a  mad-house.  If  one  brings  them 
food,  one  notices  that  they  have  forgotten 
how  to  eat.  Their  stomach,  weakened  by 
months  of  starvation,  can  no  longer  as- 
similate nourishment.  If  one  gives  them 
bread,  they  put  it  aside  indifferently.  They 
just  lie  there  quietly,  waiting  for  death. 

"  Amid  such  surroundings,  how  are  we 
teachers  to  read  German  Fairy  Stories  with 
our  children,  or,  indeed,  the  story  of  the 
Good  Samaritan  in  the  Bible  ?  How  are 
we  to  make  them  decline  and  conjugate 
irrelevant  words,  while  round  them  in  the 
yards  adjoining  the  German  Technical 
School    their    starving    fellow-countrymen 

are  slowly  succumbing?  Under  such  cir- 
cumstances our  educational  work  flies  in 
the  face  of  all  true  morality  and  becomes 
a  mockery  of  human  sympathy. 

"  And  what  becomes  of  these  poor 
people  who  have  been  driven  in  thousands 
through  Aleppo  and  the  neighbourhood 
into  the  deserts,  reduced  almost  entirely, 
by  this  time,  to  women  and  children? 
They  are  driven  on  and  on  from  one  place 
to  another.  The  thousands  shrink  to  hun- 
dreds and  the  hundreds  to  tiny  remnants, 
and  even  these  remnants  are  driven  on 
till  the  last  is  dead.  Then  at  last  they  have 
reached  the  goal  of  their  wandering,  the 
'  New  Homes  assigned  to  the  Armenians,' 
as  the  newspapers  phrase  it. 

"  '  Ta'ahm  el  aleman  '  ('  the  teaching 
of  the  Germans ')  is  the  simple  Turk's 
explanation  to  everyone  who  asks  him 
about  the  originators  of  these  measures. 

"  The  educated  Moslems  are  convinced 
that,  even  though  the  German  nation  dis- 
countenances such  horrors,  the  German 
Government  is  taking  no  steps  to  put  a 
stop  to  them,  out  of  consideration  for  its 
Turkish  Ally. 

"  Mohammedans,  too,  of  more  sensitive 
feelings — Turks  and  Arabs  alike — shake 
their  heads  in  disapproval  and  do  not 
conceal  their  tears  when  they  see  a  convoy 
of  exiles  marching  through  the  city,  and 

B  2 


Turkish  soldiers  using  cudgels  upon  women 
in  advanced  pregnancy  and  upon  dying 
people  who  can  no  longer  drag  themselves 
along.  They  cannot  believe  that  their 
Government  has  ordered  these  atrocities, 
and  they  hold  the  Germans  responsible 
for  all  such  outrages,  Germany  being  con- 
sidered during  the  war  as  Turkey's  school- 
master in  everything.  Even  the  mollahs 
in  the  mosques  say  that  it  was  not  the 
Sublime  Porte  but  the  German  officers 
who  ordered  the  ill-treatment  and  de- 
struction of  the  Armenians. 

"  The  things  which  have  been  passing 
here  for  months  under  everybody's  eyes 
will  certainly  remain  as  a  stain  on  Ger- 
many's shield  in  the  memory  of  Orientals. 

"  In  order  not  to  be  obliged  to  give  up 
their  faith  in  the  character  of  the  Germans, 
which  they  have  hitherto  respected,  many 
educated  Mohammedans  explain  the  situa- 
tion to  themselves  as  follows  :  '  The  Ger- 
man nation,'  they  say,  '  probably  knows 
nothing  about  the  frightful  massacres  which 
are  on  foot  at  the  present  time  against  the 
native  Christians  in  all  parts  of  Turkey. 
Knowing  the  German  love  of  truth,  how 
otherwise  can  we  explain  the  articles  we 
read  in  German  newspapers,  which  appear 
to  know  of  nothing  except  that  individual 
Armenians  have  been  deservedly  shot  by 
martial  law  as  spies  and  traitors  ?  '    Others 

again  say  :  '  Perhaps  the  German  Govern- 
ment has  had  its  hands  tied  by  some 
treaty  defining  its  powers,  or  perhaps  inter- 
vention is  inopportune  for  the  moment.' 

"  I  know  for  a  fact  that  the  Embassy 
at   Constantinople   has   been  informed   by 
the  German  Consulates  of  all  that  has  been 
happening.      As,   however,   there   has  not 
been  so  far  the  least  change  in  the  system 
of    deportation,    I    feel    myself    compelled 
by  conscience  to  make  my  present  report." 
At  the  time  when  I   composed  this  report, 
the  German  Consul  at  Aleppo  was  represented 
by    his    colleague    from    Alexandretta — Consul 
Hoffmann,      Consul  Hoffmann  informed  me  that 
the  German  Embassy  had  been  advised  in  detail 
about   the   events   in   the   interior   in   repeated 
reports    from   the    Consulates   at   Alexandretta, 
Aleppo  and  Mosul.     He  told  me  that  a  report 
of  what  I  had  seen  with  my  own  eyes  would, 
however,  be  welcome  as  a  supplement  to  these 
official  documents  and  as  a  description  in  detail. 
He  said  he  would  convey  my  report  to  the  Em- 
bassy at   Constantinople   by  a  sure   agency.     I 
now  worked  out  a  report  on  the  desired  lines, 
giving  an  exact  description  of  the  state  of  things 
in  the  han  opposite  our  school. 

Consul  Hoffmann  wished  to  add  some  photo- 
graphs which  he  had  taken  in  the  han  himself. 
The  photographs  displayed  piles  of  corpses, 
among  which  children  still  alive  were  crawling 


In  its  revised  form  the  report  was  signed  by 
my  colleague,  Dr.  Graeter  (higher  grade  teacher), 
and  by  Frau  Marie  Spiecker,  as  well  as  by  myself. 
The  head  of  our  institution,  Director  Huber, 
also  placed  his  name  to  it  and  added  a  few 
words  in  the  following  sense  :  "  My  colleague 
Dr.  Niepage's  report  is  not  at  &l]  exaggerated. 
For  weeks  we  have  been  living  here  in  an  atmo- 
sphere poisoned  with  sickness  and  the  stench  of 
corpses.  Only  the  hope  of  speedy  relief  makes 
it  possible  for  us  to  carry  on  our  wcrk." 

The  rehef  did  not  come.  I  then  thought  of 
resigning  my  post  as  higher  grade  teacher  in 
the  Technical  School,  on  the  ground  that  it  was 
senseless  and  morally  unjustifiable  to  be  a  repre- 
sentative of  European  civihsation  with  the  task 
of  bringing  moral  and  intellectual  education 
to  a  nation  if,  at  the  same  time,  one  had  to  look 
on  passively  while  the  Government  of  the 
country  was  abandoning  one's  pupils'  fellow- 
countrymen  to  an  agonising  death  by  starvation. 

Those  around  me,  however,  as  well  as  the 
head  of  our  institution.  Director  Huber,  dis- 
suaded me  from  my  intention.  It  was  pointed 
out  to  me  that  there  was  value  in  our  continued 
presence  in  the-  country,  as  eye-witnesses  of 
what  went  on.  Perhaps,  it  was  suggested,  our 
presence  might  have  some  effect  in  making  the 
Turks  behave  more  humanely  towards  their 
unfortunate  victims,  out  of  consideration  for  us 
Germans.  I  see  now  that  I  have  remained  far 
too  long  a  silent  witness  of  all  this  wickedness. 


Our  presence  had  no  ameliorating  effect 
whatever,  and  what  we  could  do  personally 
came  to  little.  Frau  Spiecker,  our  brave,  ener- 
getic colleague,  bought  soap,  and  all  the  women 
and  children  in  our  neighbourhood  who  were 
still  alive — there  were  no  men  left — were  washed 
and  cleansed  from  lice.  Frau  Spiecker  set  women 
to  work  to  make  soup  for  those  who  could  still 
assimilate  nourishment.  I,  myself,  distributed 
two  pails  of  tea  and  cheese  and  moistened  bread 
among  the  dying  children  every  evening  for 
six  weeks ;  but  when  the  Hunger-Typhus  or 
Spotted-Typhus  spread  through  the  city  from 
these  charnel  houses,  six  of  us  succumbed  to  it 
and  had  to  give  up  our  relief  work.  Indeed,  for 
the  exiles  who  came  to  Aleppo,  help  was  really 
useless.  We  could  only  afford  those  doomed  to 
death  a  few  slight  alleviations  of  their  death  agony. 

What  we  saw  with  our  own  eyes  here  in 
Aleppo  was  really  only  the  last  scene  in  the 
great  tragedy  of  the  extermination  of  the 
Armenians.  It  was  only  a  minute  fraction  of 
the  horrible  drama  that  was  being  played  out 
simultaneously  in  all  the  other  provinces  of 
Turkey.  Many  more  appalling  things  were  re- 
ported by  the  engineers  of  the  Bagdad  Railway, 
when  they  came  back  from  their  work  on  the 
section  under  construction,  or  by  German 
travellers  who  met  the  convoys  of  exiles  on  their 
journeys.  Many  of  these  gentlemen  had  seen 
such  appalling  sights  that  they  could  eat  nothing 
for  days. 


One  of  them,  Herr  Greif,  of  Aleppo,  reported 
corpses  of  violated  women  lying  about  naked 
in  heaps  on  the  railway  embankment  at  Tell- 
Abiad  and  Ras-el-Ain.  Another,  Herr  Spiecker, 
of  Aleppo,  had  seen  Turks  tie  Armenian  men 
together,  fire  several  volleys  of  small  shot  with 
fowling-pieces  into  the  human  mass,  and  go 
off  laughing  while  their  victims  slowly  perished 
in  frightful  convulsions.  Other  men  had  their 
hands  tied  behind  their  back  and  were  rolled 
down  steep  cliffs.  Women  were  standing  below, 
who  slashed  those  who  had  rolled  down  v/ith 
knives  until  they  were  dead.  A  Protestant 
pastor  who,  two  years  before,  had  given  a 
very  warm  welcome  to  my  colleague.  Doctor 
Graeter,  when  he  was  passing  through  his 
village,  had  his  finger  nails  torn  out. 

The  German  Consul  from  Mosul  related,  in 
my  presence,  at  the  German  club  at  Aleppo 
that;  in  many  places  on  the  road  from  Mosul 
to  Aleppo,  he  had  seen  children's  hands  l3ang 
hacked  off  in  such  numbers  that  one  could  have 
paved  the  road  with  them.  In  the  German 
hospital  at  Ourfa  there  was  a  little  girl  who  had 
had  both  her  hands  hacked  off. 

In  an  Arab  village  on  the  way  to  Aleppo 
Herr  Hoist ein,  the  German  Consul  from  Mosul, 
saw  shallow  graves  with  freshly-buried  Armenian 
corpses.  The  Arabs  of  the  village  declared  that 
they  had  killed  these  Armenians  by  the  Govern- 
ment's orders.  One  asserted  proudly  that  he 
personally  had  killed  eight. 


In  many  Christian  houses  in  Aleppo  I  found 
Armenian  girls  hidden  who  by  some  chance 
had  escaped  death;  either  they  had  been  left 
Ipng  exhausted  and  had  been  taken  for  dead 
when  their  companions  had  been  driven  on, 
or,  in  other  cases,  Europeans  had  found  an  oppor- 
tunity to  buy  the  poor  creatures  for  a  few  marks 
from  the  last  Turkish  soldier  who  had  violated 
them.  All  these  girls  showed  symptoms  of  mental 
derangement ;  many  of  them  had  had  to  watch 
the  Turks  cut  their  parents'  throats.  I  know 
pooT  things  who  have  not  had  a  single  word 
coaxed  out  of  them  for  months,  and  not  a  smile 
to  this  moment.  A  girl  about  fourteen  years 
old  was  given  shelter  by  Herr  Krause,  Depot 
Manager  for  the  Bagdad  Railway  at  Aleppo. 
The  girl  had  been  so  many  times  ravished  by 
Turkish  soldiers  in  one  night  that  she  had  com- 
pletely lost  her  reason.  I  saw  her  tossing  on  her 
pillow  in  delirium  with  burning  lips,  and  could 
hardly  get  water  down  her  throat. 

A  German  I  know  saw  hundreds  of  Christian 
peasant  women  who  were  compelled,  near  Ourfa, 
to  strip  naked  by  the  Turkish  soldiers.  For  the 
amusement  of  the  soldiers  they  had  to  drag 
themselves  through  the  desert  in  this  condition 
for  days  together  in  a  temperature  of  40° 
Centigrade,  until  their  skins  were  completely 
scorched.  Another  witness  saw  a  Turk  tear  a 
child  out  of  its  Armenian  mother's  womb  and 
hurl  it  against  the  wall. 

There  are  other  occurrences,  worse  than  these 


few  examples  which  I  give  here,  recorded  in  the 
numerous  reports  which  have  been  sent  in  to  the 
Embassy  from  the  German  Consulates  at  Alexan- 
dretta,  Aleppo  and  Mosul.  The  Consuls  are  of 
opinion  that,  so  far,  probably  about  one  milHon 
Armenians  have  perished  in  the  massacres  of 
the  last  few  months.  Of  this  number,  one  must 
reckon  that  at  least  half  are  women  and  children 
who  have  either  been  murdered  or  have  suc- 
cumbed to  starvation. 

It  is  a  duty  of  conscience  to  bring  these 
things  into  publicity,  and,  although  the  Turkish 
Government,  in  destrojdng  the  Armenian  nation, 
may  only  be  pursuing  objects  of  internal  policy, 
the  way  this  policy  is  being  carried  out  has  many 
of  the  characteristics  of  a  general  persecution  of 

-  All  the  tens  of  thousands  of  girls  and  women 
who  have  been  carried  off  into  Turkish  harems, 
and  the  masses  of  children  who  have  been  col- 
lected by  the  Government  and  distributed  among 
the  Turks  and  Kurds,  are  lost  to  Christendom, 
and  have  to  accept  Islam.  The  abusive  epithet 
"  giaour  "  is  now  heard  once  again  by  German 

At  Adana  I  saw  a  crowd  of  Armenian  orphans 
marching  through  the  streets  under  a  guard  of 
Turkish  soldiers;  their  parents  have  been 
slaughtered  and  the  children  have  to  become 
Mohammedans.  Everywhere  there  have  been 
cases  in  which  adult  Armenians  were  able  to 
save  their  lives  by  readiness  to  accept   Islam. 


Sometimes,  however,  the  Turkish  officials  first 
made  the  Christians  present  a  petition  to  be 
received  into  the  communion  of  Islam,  and  then 
answered  very  grandly,  in  order  to  throw  dust 
in  the  eyes  of  Europeans,  that  religion  is  not  a 
thing  to  play  with.  These  officials  preferred  to 
have  the  petitioners  killed.  Men  like  Talaat 
Bey  and  Enver  Pasha,  when  prominent  Armenians 
brought  them  presents,  often  tempered  their 
thanks  with  the  remark  that  they  would  have 
been  still  better  pleased  if  the  Armenian  givers 
had  made  their  presents  as  Mohammedans.  A 
newspaper  reporter  was  told  by  one  of  these 
gentlemen  :  "  Certainly  we  are  now  punishing 
many  innocent  people  as  well.  But  we  have 
to  guard  ourselves  even  against  those  who  may 
one  day  become  guilty."  On  such  grounds 
Turkish  statesmen  justify  the  wholesale  slaughter 
of  defenceless  women  and  children.  A  German 
Catholic  ecclesiastic  reported  that  Enver  Pasha 
declared,  in  the  presence  of  Monsignore  Dolci, 
the  Papal  Envoy  at  Constantinople,  that  he 
would  not  rest  so  long  as  a  single  Armenian 
remained  alive. 

The  object  of  the  deportations  is  the  ex- 
termination of  the  whole  Armenian  nation. 
This  purpose  is  also  proved  by  the  fact  that  the 
Turkish  Government  declines  all  assistance  from 
Missionaries,  Sisters  of  Mercy  and  European 
residents  in  the  country,  and  systematically 
tries  to  stop  their  work.  A  Swiss  engineer  was 
to    have    been   brought   before    a   court-martial 


because  he  had  distributed  bread  in  Anatolia  to 
the  starving  Armenian  women  and  children  in  a 
convoy  of  exiles.  The  Government  has  not 
hesitated  even  to  deport  Armenian  pupils  and 
teachers  from  the  German  schools  at  Adana  and 
Aleppo,  and  Armenian  children  from  the  German 
orphanages,  without  regard  to  all  the  efforts  of 
the  Consuls  and  the  heads  of  the  institutions 
involved.  The  Government  also  rejected  the 
American  Government's  offer  to  take  the  exiles 
to  America  on  American  ships  and  at  America's 

The  opinion  of  our  German  Consuls  and  of 
many  foreigners  resident  in  the  country  about 
the  Armenian  massacres  will  some  day  become 
known  through  their  reports.  I  can  say  nothing 
about  the  verdict  of  the  German  officers  in 
Turkey.  I  often  noticed,  when  in  their  com- 
pany, an  ominous  silence  or  a  convulsive  effort 
to  change  the  subject  when  any  German  of 
warm  sympathies  and  independent  judgment 
began  to  speak  about  the  Armenians'  frightful 

When  Field-Marshal  von  der  Goltz  was 
travelling  to  Bagdad  and  had  to  cross  the 
Euphrates  at  Djerablus,  there  was  a  large 
encampment  of  half-starved  Armenian  exiles 
there.  Just  before  the  Field-Marshal's  arrival, 
so  I  was  told  at  Djerablus,  these  unhappy 
people,  the  sick  and  dying  with  the  rest,  were 
driven  under  the  whip  several  kilometres  away 
over   the   nearest   hills.     When  von   der   Goltz 


passed  through,  there  were  no  traces  left  of  the 
repulsive  spectacle ;  but  when  I  visited  the  place 
shortly  afterwards  with  some  of  my  colleagues, 
we  found  corpses  of  men,  women  and  children 
still  lying  in  out-of-the-way  places,  ard  frag- 
ments of  clothes,  skulls  and  bones  which  had 
been  partly  stripped  of  the  flesh  by  jackals 
and  birds  of  prey. 

The  author  of  the  present  report  considers 
it  out  of  the  question  that,  if  the  German 
Government  is  seriously  determined  to  stem 
the  tide  of  destruction  even  at  this  eleventh 
hour,  it  would  find  it  impossible  to  bring  the 
Turkish  Government  to  reason.  If  the  Turks 
are  really  so  well  inclined  to  us  Germans  as 
people  say,  cannot  they  have  it  pointed  out  to 
them  how  seriously  they  compromise  us  before 
the  whole  civilised  world,  if  we,  as  their  Allies, 
have  to  look  on  passively  while  our  fellow- 
Christians  in  Turkey  are  slaughtered  in  their 
hundreds  of  thousands,  their  women  and 
daughters  violated,  their  children  brought  up 
as  Mohammedans?  Cannot  the  Turks  be  made 
to  understand  that  their  barbarities  are  reckoned 
to  our  account,  and  that  we  Germans  will  be 
accused  either  of  criminal  compHcity  or  of 
contemptible  weakness,  if  we  shut  our  eyes 
to  the  frightful  horrors  which  this  war  has 
produced,  and  seek  to  pass  over  in  silence  facts 
which  are  already  notorious  all  over  the  world? 
If  the  Turks  are  really  as  intelligent  as  is  said, 
should  it  be  impossible  to  convince  them  that, 


in  exterminating  the  Christian  nations  in  Turkey, 
they  are  destroying  the  productive  factors  and 
the  intermediaries  of  European  trade  and  general 
civilisation  ?  If  the  Turks  are  as  far-sighted 
as  is  said,  can  they  blind  themselves  to  the 
danger  that,  when  the  civilised  States  of  Europe 
have  taken  cognisance  of  what  has  been  happening 
in  Turkey  during  the  war,  they  may  be  driven 
to  the  conclusion  that  Turkey  has  forfeited  the 
right  to  govern  herself  and  has  destroyed  once 
for  all  any  belief  in  her  tolerance  and  capacity 
for  civilisation  ?  Will  not  the  German  Govern- 
ment be  standing  for  what  is  best  in  Turkey's 
own  interest,  if  it  hinders  Turkey  from  ruining 
herself  morally  and  economically? 

In  this  report  I  hope  to  reach  the  Govern- 
ment's ear  through  the  accredited  representatives 
of  the  German  nation. 

When  the  Reichstag  sits  in  Committee, 
these  things  must  no  longer  be  passed  over, 
however  painful  they  are.  Nothing  could  put 
us  more  to  shame  than  the  erection  at  Con- 
stantinople of  a  Turco-German  palace  of  friend- 
ship at  huge  expense,  while  we  are  not  in  a 
position  to  shield  our  fellow-Christians  from 
barbarities  unparalleled  even  in  the  blood- 
stained history  of  Turkey.  Would  not  the  funds 
collected  be  better  spent  in  building  orphanages 
for  the  inn®cent  victims  of  Turkey's  barbarities  ? 

After  the  massacres  of  igog  a  kind  of  recon- 
cihation  banquet  was  held  at  Adana,  in  which 
the  heads   of    the   Armenian   clergy  took  part 


as  well  as  high  Turkish  officials.  The  German 
Consul,  Bilge,  who  was  present,  related  that  an 
Armenian  ecclesiastic  got  up  and  said  in  his 
speech  :  "  It  is  true  that  we  Armenians  have 
lost  much  in  these  days  of  massacre — our  men, 
our  women,  our  children  and  our  goods.  But 
you  Turks  have  lost  more;  you  have  lost  your 

If  we  persist  in  treating  the  massacres  of 
Christians  as  Turkey's  internal  affair,  which  is 
not  important  for  us  except  as  making  us  sure 
of  the  Turks'  friendship,  then  we  must  change 
the  whole  orientation  of  our  German  culture 
policy.  We  must  stop  sending  German  teachers 
to  Turkey,  and  we  teachers  must  give  up  telling 
our  pupils  in  Turkey  about  German  poets  and 
philosophers,  German  culture  and  German  ideals 
— to  say  nothing  of  German  Christianity. 

Three  years  ago  I  was  sent  by  the  Foreign 
Office  as  higher  grade  teacher  to  the  German 
Technical  School  at  Aleppo.  The  Prussian 
Provincial  School  Board  at  Magdeburg  specially 
enjoined  upon  me,  when  I  went  out,  to  show 
myself  worthy  of  the  confidence  reposed  in  me 
in  the  grant  of  furlough  to  take  up  this  educa- 
tional post  at  Aleppo.  I  should  not  be  fulfilling 
my  duty  as  a  German  official  and  an  accredited 
representative  of  German  culture,  if  I  consented 
to  keep  silence  in  face  of  the  atrocities  of  which 
I  was  a  witness,  or  to  look  on  passively  while 
the  pupils  entrusted  to  me  were  driven  out  to 
die  of  starvation  in  the  desert. 


If  anyone  enquires  into  the  motives  which 
induced  the  Young  Turkish  Government  to 
decree  and  carry  out  these  frightful  measures 
against  the  Armenians,  one  might  give  the 
following  explanation  : — 

The  Young  Turk  has  the  European  ideal  of 
a  united  national  state  always  floating  before 
his  eyes.  He  hopes  to  turkify  the  non-Turkish 
Mohammedan  races — Kurds,  Persians,  Arabs, 
and  so  on  —  by  administrative  methods  and 
through  Turkish  education,  reinforced  by  an 
appeal  to  their  common  interests  as  Moham- 
medans. The  Christian  nations — Armenians, 
Syrians  and  Greeks — alarm  him  by  their  cultural 
and  economic  superiority,  and  he  sees  in  their 
religion  an  obstacle  to  turkifying  them  by 
peaceful  means.  They  have,  therefore,  to  be 
exterminated  or  converted  to  Mohammedanism 
by  force.  The  Turks  do  not  suspect  that,  in 
doing  this,  they  are  sawing  off  the  branch  on 
which  they  are  sitting  themselves.  Who  is  to 
bring  progress  to  Turkey  if  not  the  Greeks, 
Armenians  and  Syrians,  who  constitute  more 
than  a  quarter  of  the  population  of  the 
Empire  ? 

The  Turks,  the  least  gifted  of  all  the  races 
living  in  Turkey,  are  themselves  only  a  minority 
of  the  population,  and  are  still  far  behind  even 
the  Arabs  in  civilisation.  Where  is  there  any 
Turkish  trade,  Turkish  handicraft,  Turkish  manu- 
facture, Turkish  art,  Turkish  science  ?  Even 
their  law,   religion   and  language,   so  far  as  it 


can  be  given  literary  form,  have  been  borrowed 
Irom  the  conquered  Arabs. 

We  teachers  who  have  been  teaching  Greeks, 
Armenians,  Arabs,  Turks  and  Jews  in  German 
schools  in  Turkey  for  years,  can  only  declare 
that  the  pure  Turks  are  the  most  unwilling  and 
incapable  of  all  our  pupils.  When,  for  once  in 
a  way,  a  Turk  achieves  something,  in  nine  cases 
out  of  ten  one  can  be  certain  that  one  is  dealing 
with  a  Circassian,  an  Albanian,  or  a  Turk  with 
Bulgarian  blood  in  his  veins.  From  my  personal 
experience  I  can  only  prophesy  that  the  Turks 
proper  will  never  achieve  anything  in  trade, 
manufacture  or  science. 

We  are  told  now  in  German  newspapers  of 
the  Turks'  hunger  for  education  and  of  how 
they  are  thronging  eagerly  to  learn  German. 
There  are  even  reports  of  language  courses  for 
adults  which  have  been  started  in  Turkey. 
They  are  certainly  started,  but  with  what  results  ? 
They  go  on  to  tell  one  of  a  language  course  at 
a  Technical  School  which  opened  with  twelve 
Turkish  teachers  as  pupils.  The  author  of  this 
story  forgets,  however,  to  add  that,  after  four 
lessons,  only  six  pupils  put  in  an  appearance; 
after  five  lessons,  five;  after  six  lessons,  four, 
and,  after  seven  lessons,  only  three,  so  that 
after  eight  lessons  the  course  came  to  an  end, 
through  the  laziness  of  the  pupils,  before  it  had 
properly  begun.  If  the  pupils  had  been  Ar- 
menians they  would  have  persevered  until  the 
end   of   the   school   year,   learnt   patiently,   and 


come  away  with  a  respectable  mastery  of  the 
German  language. 

What  is  Germany's  duty  and,  indeed,  the 
duty  of  every  civilised  Christian  nation  in  face 
of  the  Armenian  massacres?  We  must  try 
every  means  of  saving  the  half  million  of  Ar- 
menian women  and  children  who  may  still  be 
alive  in  Turkey  to-day,  and  who  are  abandoned 
to  death  by  starvation,  from  an  end  which 
would  be  a  disgrace  to  the  whole  civilised  world. 
The  hundreds  of  thousands  of  deported  women 
and  children  who  have  been  left  lying  on  the 
borders  of  the  Mesopotamian  desert,  and  on  the 
roads  leading  thither,  can  only  maintain  their 
miserable  existence  a  short  time  longer.  How 
long  can  people  really  support  life  by  picking 
grains  of  corn  out  of  horse-dung  and  depending 
for  the  rest  upon  grass  ?  Months  of  insufficient 
nourishment  and  the  prevailing  dysentery  will 
have  brought  countless  numbers  into  a  state 
past  help.  But  at  Konia  a  few  thousand 
Armenians  are  still  alive — educated  people  from 
Constantinople,  who  were  in  easy  circumstances 
before  their  deportation,  doctors,  writers,  mer- 
chants— and  these  could  still  be  helped  before 
they  too  succumb  to  the  fate  that  threatens 
all.  There  are  1,500  Armenians  in  good  health 
— men,  women  and  children,  including  grand- 
mothers sixty  years  old  and  many  children  of 
six  and  seven — who  are  still  at  work  on  a  section 
of  the  Bagdad  Railway  between  Eiran  and 
EntilH,    near   the    big    tunnel,    breaking  stones 


and  shovelling  earth.  For  the  moment  they 
are  being  looked  alter  by  Herr  Morf,  Super- 
intendent Engineer  of  the  Bagdad  Railway  ; 
but  the  Turkish  Government  has  registered 
their  names  too.  As  soon  as  their  work  is 
finished,  as  it  will  be  in  perhaps  two  or  three 
months'  time  from  now,  and  they  are  no 
longer  wanted,  "  new  homes  will  be  assigned 
to  them," — that  is,  the  men  will  be  taken  off 
and  slaughtered,  the  pretty  women  and  girls 
will  find  their  way  into  harems,  the  remainder 
will  be  driven  hither  and  thither  without  food 
through  the  desert  until  all  is  over. 

The  Armenian  nation  has  a  claim  to  German 
help.  When  Armenian  massacres  threatened  to 
break  out  in  Cilicia  several  years  ago,  a  German 
warship  appeared  off  Mersina.  The  Commander 
called  on  the  Armenian  Katholikos  at  Adana 
and  assured  him  that,  so  long  as  Germany  had 
any  influence  in  Turkey,  massacres  like  those 
under  Abd-ul-Hamid  would  be  impossible.  The 
same  assurance  was  given  by  the  German 
Ambassador,  von  Wangenheim,  to  the  Armenian 
Patriarch  and  to  the  President  of  the  Armenian 
National  Council  in  an  interview  last  April. '"•■' 

Even  apart  from  our  common  duty  as  Chris- 
tians, we  Germans  are  under  a  special  obligation 
to  stop  the  complete  extermination  of  the  half- 
million  Armenian  Christians  who  still  survive. 
We  are  Turkey's  allies  and,  after  the  elimination 
of  the  French,  EngHsh  and  Russians,  we  are  the 

*  1915- 


only  foreigners  who  have  any  say  in  Turkish 
affairs.  We  may  indignantly  refute  the  lies  of 
our  enemies  abroad,  who  say  that  the  massacres 
have  been  organised  by  German  Consuls.  We 
shall  not  be  able  to  dissipate  the  Turkish  nation's 
conviction  that  the  Armenian  massacres  were 
ordered  by  Germany,  unless  energetic  steps  are 
at  last  taken  by  German  diplomatists  and  officers. 
And  even  if  we  cleared  ourselves  of  everything 
but  the  one  reproach  that  our  timidity  and  weak- 
ness in  dealing  with  our  ally  had  prevented  us 
from  saving  half  a  milHon  women  and  children 
from  slaughter  or  death  by  starvation,  the 
image  of  the  German  War  would  be  disfigured 
for  all  time  in  the  mirror  of  history  by  a  hideous 

It  is  utterly  erroneous  to  think  that  the 
Turkish  Government  will  refrain  of  its  own  accord 
even  from  the  destruction  of  the  women  and 
children,  unless  the  strongest  pressure  is  exer- 
cised by  the  German  Government.  Only  just 
before  I  left  Aleppo  last  May,*  the  crowds  of 
exiles  encamped  at  Ras-el-Ain  on  the  Bagdad 
Railway,  estimated  at  20,000  women  and  child- 
ren, were  slaughtered  to  the  last  one. 

* 1916. 

Printed  in  Great  Britain  by  Messrs.  Eyre  &  Spottiswoode,  Ltd., 
East  Harding  Street,  Fetter  Lane,  London,  E.CA.